February 2017 – Young Female in mating season

Not only is Angel growing in size, she is growing in her determination to be a leader. She has a mind of her own and now that mating season is in full swing, her instincts are driving her to explore and for me that means getting into things she shouldn’t. The sweet little girl that stayed in her spot in the window all thru the fall months is now restless and continues to irritate me . After being left alone during my work day, I come back to a trail of thing in disarray on the floor, damaged, broken and although I want to yell, I have to force myself to gently show her what I am angry about and give her a firm “no’. I Stress that it should be a very firm no, something that will sink in her mind, thought at the same time I don’t know if she can be expected to disregard her instincts during the mating season. The exploration and beating up of her reflection in the mirror and window is a natural response during these months, so like with my Boy Babe, I may just have to ride the tide and accept this behavior.

What I can’t except is her unwillingness to sleep in her cubby where it is warm. Coming home and finding a very cold iguana that is chilled to the bone is asking for an expensive trip to the vet up the road. That is not OK with me.

Ever since I came back from Reno after Christmas, Angel has not wanted to cuddle in her space in the closet. At first she seemed scared. I wasn’t sure if I had put it together right. Was the blanket on the bottom or overhead? I had forgotten and when we left she was all about getting in at night and going to sleep. Every day when I returned she was there, warm and toasty and I was very happy about it.

Now every day she destroys the nice cubby I built and only twice have I found her where she should be when I return from work.

Yesterday I lost it. I noticed she has been climbing on the shoe rack on my door and I had pulled back the barrier to my upper shelves, since I wanted my closet back the way it was.

I came home to hats and shoes all over the floor and my perfectly placed closet was left in the wake of her destruction. Far in the corner, tucked in by my converse high tops was that little rascal, freezing cold and looking at me, like…I am in so much trouble. And she was.

After a loud scolding, I placed her in her cubby above my clothes and thought she would welcome the warmth. But no, she proceeded to be fussy and rebel and we fought for an hour or so.

At 11pm, she still hadn’t warmed up, so I brought her to be to cuddle in for the night. She seemed ok with that, but by this time she was zoned out and when an iguana is zoned, you can do about anything with them, since they are in a light hibernation state.

So today I work and at lunch I will re-assess the area. I think I’ll simplify the design, remove things she may not like and just place the heat throw down with pillows on both ends of the closet. I will have to iguana proof my shoe rack with slippery plastic cardboard and pull out the shelving guard so she can’t climb up. I hope this works.

In Reno she has her cute cubby on the bunk bed and loves that. But here she chose the closet. She willingly goes up the ramp, so if I can at least get her up there by herself when I am gone and turn on some warmth, she should be ok until I return at the end of the day.

I remember I adopted her in January and bedtime was an issue for quite a long time, until she chose her place in the closet.

She may be getting too big. If it continues I may have to let her have her way but I hope this is just a temporary thing. Only time will tell.

So for now I am blaming it on mating season. The weather has been cold and rainy. She has been cooped up for a while. I allow her an hour of house roaming, and she is sure to check out all the iguana hiding spots. She is determined to go out on the patio and wants to climb up in the arbor and over the fence to the neighbors. Is she looking for love?

She is spayed now, no more egg laying for this little girl, but even without ovaries, it seems her instincts are active. If there is a mirror she can climb up to, she will.

Tomorrow, if the weather is over 70, I’ll take her out for a walk at the beach. I’ll try giving her some exercise, maybe she is just not tired enough to sleep well, after all she gets up at 7am and goes to bed at 3-pm, that isn’t a long day for a lizard. Babe stayed up till 8pm with me most days.

One thing I notice is that male or female, their temperaments are very similar. It is only that Babe was much more aggressive and without mating with his stuffed dinosaurs or alligator, could be labeled as vicious, though that wasn’t it at all. He was just being a male during mating season, so misunderstood an iguana can be.

Now with my girl, I have to realize the same. She wants to wander and explore this time of year. In the wild she would have mated by now and be taking a journey, looking and fighting for territory and “her” place to lay eggs, and then wander back for the journey home. So I can’t deny her a small token of this.

I wish I was more creative and could build her things she would want to climb, things to keep her entertained. I have found that the best thought out plans, don’t always work and that the simplest things please her more. Perhaps a piece of carpet on my book shelf, leading up to a high corner in the room would intrigue her. If I place a mirror there, she will surely want to guard it. It may give her some excitement and intrigue. A cat tree would be welcomed for her, but then another ceramic heat bulb and uvb would have to be placed there as well. Perhaps a motion detector would be the key to this. I can’t wait for the day for cordless electricity. I would love a nice professionally made unit that hid all the lights, but it is a sacrifice I make for her.

OK, lets think about a cat tree and another set of lamps. Perhaps it would work well in the summer in her cage but what about keeping it clean? But in the early morning hours, she could on it outdoors in the spring, allowing her to stay warm under the lamps until the sun comes out. It is seeming more promising.

Well, it is a plan, Coscto has them for $70 and I can return it if it is not welcomed warmly. I have the fixtures, just need the bulbs.

When I think of it, it may be the best thing for if she gets used to it here, Just a thought. Well, tomorrow is my weekend, lull let the spirit move me and see what God puts in my brain.